San Francisco
Travel Guide


Getting Around Plan Itinerary Events Calendar Popular Attractions Hotel Lodging Dining Things
To Do
Shopping Concierge

Popular Attractions

Top Ten List

Offbeat Attractions


Search the Site

<<< Go Back

Visiting Alcatraz Island

Alcatraz island is one of the bay area's most popular destinations. A former federal prison, it once held such infamous persons as Al Capone, George "Machine Gun" Kelly and Robert Franklin Stroud, better known as the Birdman of Alcatraz. The prison closed in 1963. Now it is a National Park and one of our recommended places to visit.

You can take a self-guided tour of the Alcatraz prison cell house and grounds, visit exhibits and listen to ranger-led interpretive talks on topics such as famous escapes. There is also an orientation film. An audio tour is available and is highly recommended. The audio tour is available in English, French, German, Italian, Japanese and Spanish.

Park Access

While Alcatraz island is operated and maintained by the National Park Service, transportation is provided by Hornblower Yachts. A ferry transports passengers from Pier 33 to the island; it takes about 15 minutes each way. Once on the island, there is a steep, paved hill leading to the prison. For persons using a wheelchair or unable to walk up the hill, SEAT (Sustainable Easy Access Transport) is available.

Ticket Prices

Tickets are available by phone, through the web or at pier 33. This is a popular attraction and frequently sells out, so we recommend that you buy your tickets early. Tickets can be purchased up to three months in advance.

The ferry departure schedule occasionally changes so check the Alcatraz Cruises web site for more details.

Round trip With Audio Night Tour
Adult $18.75 $25.75
Senior (62+) $17.25 $23.25
Child (5-11) $10.75 $14.25

SF Travel Guide's Recommendations:

  • Allow about 2.5 hours for a visit to Alcatraz, including travel time on the ferry
  • Buy your tickets in advance on-line, even before you leave on your trip
  • There is no food available on the island. You may bring food to eat in the visitor center
  • Rough water isn't a problem, but if you are concerned go in the morning for the calmest water
  • Do take the audio tour, it really adds to the visit

Contact Information:

Alcatraz Cruises, LLC
Pier 33, Hornblower Alcatraz Landing
San Francisco, California 94133

(415) 981-7625 Ticket Sales

Alcatraz Administrative Office: 415-438-8360
Alcatraz Group Tickets: 415-438-8361

Alcatraz Cruises web site.


<<< Go Back

Home | Suggest an Addition | Help

Contact Us | Legal

Copyright © 2004-2021, All rights reserved. Contact us to obtain licensing. Use of this site is subject to certain Terms of use which constitute a legal agreement between you and, Inc.